Please Stop Saying “Ignore the Mistakes/Mess/Whatever”

How many times have you looked at a photo online and then read “Please don’t mind the messy desk” or something like that? Then, of course, you notice it when you may not have paid any attention otherwise. Same with quilting. Someone shows you a lovely quilt but says, “oh, but see the mistakes I made?” Or something like, “Don’t pay attention to the mistakes in the border.” Ok, your desk may be messy, your quilt may have mistakes, but by saying not to pay attention to those things, you are drawing attention to them.

One of many mistakes, unnoticeable overall unless I point it out.
my needle was bumped while quilting

Your quilt will have mistakes. Sometimes you know they’re there all along. Other times you only see them when you’ve snipped your last thread and you said, “it’s finished!” I know I’ve done it. I’ve gazed at my newest creation and thought, wow, that’s nice. And then a mistake pops into my vision and I can’t see anything else. But you know what? Most of the time, I am the only one who can see the error. The same thing will happen with your quilts.

As someone who loves looking at creations from other people, I have to say that it’s a turn-off when someone tells me to ignore something, like an error. And an even bigger turn-off is when someone brushes off compliments on their quilt by saying things like, “yeah, but did you see how I messed up here?” Take the compliment. It’s lovely, it’s beautiful, it’s unique. Accept the compliment and resist the urge to point out the flaws.

If you visited my home and saw my beautiful quilts, you would likely not see the errors in them. You might not even see them if I point them out. But each and every one of my quilts has mistakes, some minor, some doozies. It’s your creation – who cares if there’s a mistake in it? Unless you are entering your quilt into a competition, where mistakes are detected, no one but you will know it is there.

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